Transformed by the Word: Under Construction

By Lyn Wake |  Wycliffe Today Winter 2024 Edition 

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. Philippians 1:6 (NLT)

In a few months, I’ll be headed to Vanuatu to support those involved in new translation projects. The long, challenging, and often costly work of Bible translation reminds me of the ongoing journey of grief I began after my daughter Bethany lost her battle with brain cancer 13 years ago. As I grieve, I’ve developed a new contemplative habit of taking notice of epitaphs engraved on headstones. Some epitaphs are sad and futile. But I love discovering words that leave me with a desire to know more of the story beyond the grave.

Several years ago, I visited the gravesides of evangelist Billy Graham and his wife, Ruth Bell Graham. I’ve always thought of Billy as my ‘spiritual grandfather’ but it was Ruth’s epitaph that captured my attention that day. The words simply read: ‘End of Construction. Thank you for your patience.’

Before her passing in 2007, Ruth recounted navigating a highway through the middle of a construction site and eventually seeing a sign with those same words. ‘When I die, I want that engraved on my stone’, was her request to her family.*

Ruth lived the truth that every believer in Christ is ‘under construction’ as we are transformed into his likeness. One glorious day, that construction will be complete. But until then, our lives are made up of mistakes and learning, waiting and growing – all requiring a great deal of patience through the process.

Friends, as we continue to trust the Master Builder, we can be assured that all his work will indeed be completed in his perfect way, in his perfect time – for our good, and his glory.

For further reflection: What memorial words would you like engraved on your gravestone?

Be transformed by the Word as you engage with: Psalm 138:8 and Philippians 1:1-6.

Prayer: Father, thank you for your patience with me as I live into the truth that your master plan will be completed on time – and be exceedingly more wonderful than I can imagine! Amen.

Read more of Lyn’s story and be encouraged by others who have learned to give their pain to God in her new book Waiting Well With Jesus. Refer to the Response Form for details. 

Thanks for your patience...

Waiting is hard, isn't it. But imagine waiting 2000 years for Scripture in your language! Thanks for your patience. And thanks for your generous support which will help bring the long wait to an end...